Glass reinforced plastic (GRP) a new emerging contaminant - First evidence of GRP impact on aquatic organisms

Corina Ciocan, Petra Kristova, Claude Annels, Mael Derjean, Laurence Hopkinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Plastics and synthetic materials are polluting the world's oceans. In this study we exposed juvenile mussels, Mytilus edulis, to glass reinforced plastic (GRP) dust, under laboratory conditions. The study ran for a period of 7 days, to test for the morphological and potential physiological impacts of GRP. Infrared spectroscopy has revealed that the GRP resin material is poly diallyl phthalate. In mussels, particulate glass and plastics were detected in the digestive tubules and gills, with a suite of inflammatory features observed in all examined organs. In parallel, we observed the effect of powdered GRP on swimming behaviour and survival of water fleas, Daphnia magna. Polymer particles and fibreglass adhered to the filament hairs on appendages, including the caudal spine, in exposed organisms. Most importantly, swimming impairment and sinking of the animals were recorded shortly after exposure. The potential implications for severe localized impact of GRP on aquatic environment are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Article number111559
JournalMarine Pollution Bulletin
Volume160
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2020

Keywords

  • Glass reinforced plastic
  • Inflammatory reaction
  • Mussels
  • Swimming impairment

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